Sunday, 16 February 2020

The Haunting Of Villa Diodati

“Definitely a hand!”

The Haunting Of Villa Diodati comes weighted with expectations. The Year Without A Summer is one of those stories that science fiction, horror and fantasy fans know very well, from the resulting Frankenstein and The Vampyre to Ken Russell’s Gothic and many more. (I did it in The Door In Time too, drawing ideas from Frankenstein’s Womb by Warren Ellis and Marek Oleksicki, and I suggested it as a historical setting for the Frankenstein-inspired Chronicles Of Darkness RPG Promethean: The Created.)

This includes audio and comic Doctor Who. So the TV version is not the first, but as the one that gets on TV it will be the definitive Whovian take for many.

Help! (See what I did there?)

A new poster on RPGnet seeks adventure hooks based on Beatles and Bond titles. Far be it from me to refuse.

Sunday, 9 February 2020

Can You Hear Me?

“I tried to warn you.”

Emily Cook at DWM reports that this is the first episode with a question mark in the title. Considering the title of the show and the accessorising of most Doctors in the 80s, this surprises me.

Sunday, 2 February 2020


This is not a normal day...

Happy Palindrome Day by the way!

Mary Somerville

A Google Doodle celebrating Mary Somerville, mathematician, geographer and astronomer, who worked out that Neptune must be there.

Sunday, 19 January 2020

Nikola Tesla’s Night Of Terror

Considering Goran Višnjić was one of its stars, this felt much less like an episode of Timeless than most of the historicals last year.

Wednesday, 8 January 2020

Twelve plots from David Bowie's Heathen

For David Bowie’s birthday, following , The Next Day and Reality, going back another album to plot hooks inspired by the song titles for Heathen:

Wednesday, 1 January 2020


Killer Satnav! Haven’t had one of those in a while.

The episode of the card game

Tonight’s series premiere Spyfall may or may not be named after the card game. (A pun on Skyfall in turn.) So naturally I’m imagining an entire series run named after modern-ish card games...

Some of them follow the rough plots of the games in question, others not so much. Most plots could be ported over directly, because the Whoniverse is like that. See also Rose Bailey’s legendary adventure based on Awful Green Things From Outer Space.

The Doctor and friends encounter the Cypher, an alien species genetically engineered to use and break codes by a long-forgotten empire, and now disrupting communications across the world...

Captain Sonar
The TARDIS lands on the set of a 1950s children’s submarine-based adventure show about to be attacked by very real and rather offended Sea Devils!

The Resistance
Earth has been conquered by the Galactic Diktat but a handful of rebels keep up the battle, preparing for a vital strike against the Diktat headquarters... but can they trust each other? And why do some of them remember a different life with no invasion?

Werewolves Of Miller’s Hollow
A small town on the 19th century Canadian frontier, a full moon, a murder... and a lot of unfair accusations. Can the travellers work out who, if anyone, is the real monster?

Love Letter
Pre-Revolutionary France, and a young courtier seeks to woo a princess. As do several other young courtiers. And at least one of them is backed by someone trying to rewrite history. And somebody’s going to have to go to that masked ball in somebody else’s place, and how’s your dancing, and for that matter how’s your duelling?

A Fake Artist Goes To New York
1983, and the Manhattan art scene is divided over a new exhibition by a young artist whose colourful abstract work is, in fact, psychic imprints created by a stranded alien he keeps locked in his attic.

Exit The Forbidden Castle
A distress signal brings the TARDIS to a castle in the Urals, under siege from without and also threatened from within. Can they work out why every door locks itself a minute after midnight, before every door opens an hour later and the enemy can enter freely?

The Red Dragon Inn
Seeking a pub lunch, the travellers find themselves in a late medieval tavern full of mercenary adventurers all telling tall tales of their exploits. And some of their most exaggerated stories seem to be coming true...

An old manor house in the Scottish Highlands, 1922, and a seance goes awry, and now everyone involved sees baffling abstract images when they close their eyes. Can they work out what they mean, solve a murder and save a lost soul?

Tortuga 1667

One Night Ultimate Vampire
Monstrous immortals that shun the light of day gather on the longest night of the year to decide who will lead them. And the TARDIS crashes nearby after being struck by lightning brought down in a psychic duel, and one the crew now has all the powers of the fighting monsters until sunrise!

The Cypher return, but now they’re asking for help as their creators threaten to rise again. Probably. Their genetic programming has gone wrong and now they can only speak in proper nouns.

Times Up!
The TARDIS falls through a temporal distortion and lands after the end of the universe. Or maybe before. Hard to tell. In any case, how do you get back before the Chronovores catch up?

Happy New Year!

And new Doctor Who day.